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Charlie Nicholas
Personal information
Full name Charles Nicholas
Date of birth 30 December 1961 (1961-12-30) (age 48)
Place of birth    Glasgow, Scotland
Playing position Forward
Senior career1
Years Club App (Gls)*
074 0(48)
151 0(34)
078 0(30)
114 0(37)
031 00(5)
448 (154)   
National team
1983–1989 Scotland 020 00(5)

1 Senior club appearances and goals
counted for the domestic league only.
* Appearances (Goals)

Charles "Charlie" Nicholas (born 30 December 1961) is a former professional football player from Scotland. During his career, he played as a striker for Celtic, Arsenal, Aberdeen and Clyde, and the Scottish national team. Since retiring as a player, he has worked as a sports journalist.


Club career


Nicholas started his career with Celtic, making his debut in 1980, at the age of 19. He had a superb 1982-83 season which saw him score fifty goals and win the Scottish Footballer of the Year and Young Player of the Year awards.

Nicholas had the envious choice of being offered a contract at Liverpool, Manchester United and Arsenal. He had interviews at both Liverpool and Manchester United. The Scottish players at Liverpool at that time, particularly Graeme Souness, were trying their best to persuade Nicholas to join them. Nicholas later stated in his autobiography that turning down Liverpool was the biggest mistake of his career.


He moved to Arsenal in June 1983 for £800,000. However, Nicholas did not live up to the hype surrounding his move;[1] His lifestyle in the capital was the subject of much tabloid speculation, earning him the nickname "Champagne Charlie"[2]; he only scored 11 goals in his first season (although two were a couple of miskicks against Tottenham in the North London derby).

Nicholas barely broke double figures in the following seasons,[3] and fell out with Arsenal's new manager George Graham with the latter's arrival in 1986.[citation needed] Despite scoring both goals in Arsenal's 2-1 League Cup final victory over Liverpool in 1987, Nicholas was dropped four games into the start of the 1987-88 season, in favour of Perry Groves.

In all he scored 54 goals in 184 matches for the Gunners.

Back to Scotland

Nicholas was sold to Aberdeen in January 1988 for £400,000,[4] and rediscovered his form before returning to Celtic in 1990. He played briefly with Clyde before retiring in 1996.

International career

Ncholas made 20 appearances for the Scottish national football team, scoring 5 goals.

Career after retirement

Nicholas now works as a pundit on the Sky Sports News programme Soccer Saturday and Sky Sports' coverage of the Scottish Premier League Scottish Cup and Scotland Internationals. He is also a part-time newspaper columnist.


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